NAGOYA – Promotion-chasing ozeki Kisenosato suffered an embarrassing loss on Tuesday, when the 10th day of the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament finished with five wrestlers tied for the lead.
Shohozan tricked Kisenosato on the tachiai. Shohozan, who typically aims for a belt hold with his left, instead charged to his right. Kisenosato did his best to change the direction of his charge but slipped on the sandy surface and fell to his second defeat in the 15-day event at Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium.
“I’ve gone for the left-hand hold over and over against him and all I ever did was lose,” said Shohozan (3-7), a fourth-ranked maegashira, who improved to 2-9 in his career against Kisenosato.
“I made up my mind at the last instant and moved so he wouldn’t get a hold with his left, either.”
Kisenosato fell into a tie with four others at 8-2.
Komusubi Takayasu entered the ring against yokozuna Harumafuji (8-2) with the tournament lead after Kisenosato’s downfall, but failed to hold onto it, losing to the Mongolian for the 11th time in 14 career bouts.
After a brief exchange of slaps and shoves, Harumafuji lunged forward and tackled his man, wrapping him up and propelling him from the ring to his second loss in 10 trips to the dohyo.
Yokozuna Hakuho had to wriggle and scrape to snatch victory from Georgian sekiwake Tochinoshin (2-8), who has yet to beat the Mongolian master in 23 career matches.
Hakuho, who limped out of the ring following his defeat on Monday, appeared to lack the lower body strength needed to finish his man off early, and the result was a thriller in which the advantage switched back and forth before the yokozuna forced his man out.
No. 2 maegashira Takarafuji improved to 8-2 to remain among the top wrestlers by shoving seventh-ranked Daishomaru out to his fifth loss.
Ozeki Terunofuji, who needs eight wins here to secure his rank for September’s tournament, fell to a fifth defeat, losing a tough battle when No. 4 maegashira Ikioi (4-6) executed a good armlock throw.
Goeido earned his sixth win despite a slow start on the tachiai against in-form Tochiozan (6-4). The No. 1 maegashira made things difficult for the ozeki and nearly forced him out. But Goeido proved the more resourceful, enticing his man into chasing him before standing his ground and winning with an overarm throw.